Can physical therapy help with scoliosis

Can Physical Therapy Help with Scoliosis? – Fitoont

If you come here, you almost certainly have scoliosis or know someone who has. And you want to know “can physical therapy help with scoliosis?”

Physical therapy plays an important role in:

  • Treating scoliosis.
  • Evaluating and developing a treatment plan.
  • Applying specific exercises for each case.

Therefore, if you have scoliosis or know someone who has scoliosis, pass on this article. Because the earlier you start treatment, the better the outcome.

Prevalence rate of scoliosis

According to the online journal of the USA physical therapy Association, the prevalence rate of scoliosis is about 3-5%, which is more common in adolescents and girls are more likely to occur. And the treatment method will be adjusted according to the degree of scoliosis.

Physical therapy is usually can be used for scoliosis less than 25 degrees.3 steps of therapeutic exercise and good posture can improve scoliosis!

In fact, everyone’s body is somewhat uneven, such as long and short feet, high and low shoulders, etc. Even if the spine is the axis of the entire body, there will be a problem of scoliosis.

Dr. Kyrillos, a physiotherapist at the online Fitoont clinic, said: “Generally speaking, people with scoliosis won’t notice it at first, unless others notice the abnormality or have pain, the patient will face up to the problem. It has become more serious.”

Go to the hospital to take an X-ray to check the scoliosis. The doctor will tell you the degree. Dr.Kyrillos said: “The acceptable range is within 20 degrees. Between 20 and 45 degrees, you need to wear a back frame to correct it. If it is greater than 45 degrees, you need surgery. Therefore, it is more helpful to intervene with physical therapy early when it is less than 20 degrees, and it can be restored to about 10 degrees or less.”

However, it should be noted that adjustment becomes more difficult as you get older, and the spine is usually shaped in high school, so adjustment after high school is limited.

Scoliosis Physiotherapy Evaluation and Intervention

  1. First assess whether there are structural abnormalities: including spinal structural defects (such as congenital hemivertebrae, rib defects, long and short feet, flat feet, etc.), and inform parents about the limitations of treatment and whether it is necessary to use assistive devices (such as back frames). , shoe heightening, arch pads) intervention, etc.
  2. Assess whether there is an imbalance between the muscles supporting the spine and its periphery (muscle tone, muscle strength, flexibility).
  3. Assess the relationship between respiratory efficiency (respiratory morphology) and rib mobility.
  4. Provide individualized exercise training to stretch muscle groups and strength other muscle groups, improve flexibility, and enhance movement control.
  5. Instruct correct breathing pattern and maintain cardiopulmonary function.
  6. Assess motor form and gross motor development.
  7. Provide correct posture and posture correction, apply and maintain in daily life.
  8. Other: Assess and treat other factors that may lead to scoliosis.

Team approch and home activities

Before accepting the assessment, parents should ask their children to maintain the correct sitting and standing postures as much as possible, such as reducing lying on the desk to write, leaning and other sitting postures, standing in three or seven steps, etc.

  1. After assessment by the physiotherapist, the therapist will teach individualized physiotherapy activities, and ask the child to write down the activities by themselves.
  2. Spend at least 30 minutes a day practicing the strength training and breathing activities taught by the therapist for at least two months.
  3. Maintain correct posture and posture at ordinary times.
  4. Regularly check back and track the movement situation.

Can Physical Therapy Help with Scoliosis?

Yes, there are 3 other corrective exercises for scoliosis that a physical therapist can design for you according to the degree and direction of the scoliosis

Not all types of scoliosis can be improved with exercise. However, scoliosis-specific physical therapy exercises (PSSE) and core stabilization training have clear benefits in reducing the angle of scoliosis and relieving muscle soreness. Experts suggest that if a patient determines that they have scoliosis, they should be evaluated by medical staff and a specially designed set of rehabilitation exercises can effectively improve scoliosis. Because not all cases of scoliosis are the same, as it differs according to its degree and the tendency is to the right or to the right.

Dr. Kyrillos said therapists usually don’t restrict patients from “not engaging in certain types of sports,” but that when they want to do certain sports (such as horizontal bars, yoga and swimming), they should take into account the condition of the spine, especially the large spinal angle. Bend, straighten or rotate to the end should pay special attention. If you feel pain while exercising, stop and do not use force with an asymmetrical object.

Treatment of scoliosis requires attention to “scapula” and “pelvis”

The causes of scoliosis include indirect effects of congenital diseases, such as muscular dystrophy, spina bifida, congenital skeletal structural abnormalities, such as hemivertebrae, missing ribs, abnormal connective tissue structure, etc., and in addition to Congenital reasons, for modern people, long-term sitting posture is not correct, the body is accustomed to one side, and may also aggravate scoliosis.

The more complicated part of scoliosis is that in addition to scoliosis, the spine also rotates. It is a three-dimensional structure. It is rarely a simple scoliosis without rotation. If you asking now can physical therapy help with scoliosis? So, Dr. Kyrillos suggested that when performing scoliosis correction exercise, it can be divided into 3 steps.

1. Only do side bends:

Clasp both hands and raise them upwards (allowing the shoulder blades on both sides to retract toward the spine), then bend to the right and left sides, take 5-6 deep breaths on each side of the bend, don’t hold your breath, Allow the rib cage and spine to stretch, and pay attention to the same degree of stretch on both sides. Do a total of 10 repetitions.

2. Combine side bending and rotation:

The same hands are clasped and raised upwards, and then combined side bending and rotation to the right and left, and each side of the bend is also matched with deeper breathing 5 ~6 times for a total of 10 reps.

3. Correction of sitting posture:

Most people think that people with scoliosis need to keep their head up and chest out, but this will make the waist more difficult and cause more pain. What we need is to focus on the two key points of “scapula” and “pelvis”.

First of all, retracting the scapula inward towards the spine can naturally bring the upper body back into alignment. Then, in the sitting position, add a support to the side of the pelvis that sinks, so that the pelvis can be straightened, and cooperate with deep breathing to help open the chest.

Corrective exercise + maintaining good habits can really defeat scoliosis

Dr. Kyrillos said: “In order to avoid scoliosis of the spine, you must sit in the correct position. For example, when an employee in the office uses a computer, it is easy to bring his head close to the computer, and the shoulders and neck are tilted up, unconsciously tilted. Even if the computer is placed on the side and the body is curved laterally, it is normal to make the scoliosis more and more serious. I always tell my patients that to learn how to align your body posture, it is very important to have good posture at home. Habits can really treat the root cause of scoliosis!”

Scoliosis Correction Exercise 1

Scoliosis Correction Exercise 1
Scoliosis Correction Exercise 1
Lay down and lift your feet
  • Lie flat on the yoga mat, so that the body is straight
  • Put your hands on your waist. Tilt your pelvis slightly back Let your waist gently press on the back of your hands
  •  Left Raise and lower your feet. Do not move your waist (you can feel it with the back of your hand, whether there is any pressure change)
  • Switch to the right foot movement
    (do 10 times on each side of the left and right sides, do 2 sets)

Scoliosis Correction Exercise 2

Scoliosis Correction Exercise 2
Scoliosis Correction Exercise 2
Lying on your side and raising your feet
  • Lie on your side on the yoga mat. Keep your body in a neutral position. Keep your waist close to the floor slightly off the ground.
  • Lightly support the ground with your hands.
  • Lift the upper foot Twisted)
  • Change sides and move the other foot
    (10 times on the left and right sides, 2 sets)

Scoliosis Correction Exercise 3

Scoliosis Correction Exercise 3
Scoliosis Correction Exercise 3
Sitting posture chest expansion
  • Sit astride a chair with a back.
  • Make sure you are sitting directly above the ischium and find your neutral position, if there is a mirror next to it, it is better
  • Lengthen the top of the head. Step on the floor with both feet. Grab the back of the chair with both hands and pull it out on both sides (the direction of force is horizontal outward, not backward ). Feel the inner part of the body strength, hold for 10 seconds. Do 5 sets

FAQS about Can Physical Therapy Help with Scoliosis?


Q: Does daily exercise cause scoliosis to worsen?

A: The studies shows that proper exercise will not cause the deterioration of scoliosis, and can enhance the efficiency of breathing and muscle use, so as long as it is a systemic exercise (such as running, swimming, playing football, gymnastics, cycling, etc.) Maintain proper upper and lower body muscle strength. If you do not exercise due to side bending, it will make the muscles less powerful to support. Therefore, daily activities can be performed in addition to scoliosis physical therapy exercises, but cannot be replaced.

Q: Is pulling the horizontal bar effective?

A: The horizontal bar uses gravity to loosen the ligaments next to the spine, which helps to improve the flexibility of the spine, but strengthening the average load-bearing pattern between the muscles next to the spine and the feet is the key to maintaining a straight spine. Therefore, it can be used as an auxiliary exercise after fix rotatory of vertebrates to avoid overload on the spine. So, it cannot replace the physical therapy exercise for scoliosis.

Q: Can I exercise while wearing a brace?

A: When performing scoliosis exercises taught by a physical therapist, it is recommended to remove the brace. For school or outdoor sports, it can be determined according to the situation. If the brace will restrict activities, it is still recommended to take it off and put it on as soon as possible after the end of the activity.


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